Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Dexter: He Only Kills the Bad Guys

Now that "Dexter" has run its course, and the series is no longer on Showtime, it is streaming on Netflix, and I'm watching it daily.  I've come late to the party because I don't subscribe to Showtime, so I'm catching up three episodes a day. I'm hooked, even though the writer(s) treat women abysmally.

I was only about three episodes into the first season, and enjoying it immensely, when I felt those old familiar feminist stirrings, and realized that there wasn't a female character who had an ounce of integrity, and if they showed any integrity, they had no moral compass or basic intelligence. You kind of expect the male cops on a series to be, if not dirty, at least bent. So, that was no surprise.  But, not a strong woman in the bunch!  That was too much. Well, not enough to make me stop watching, but enough to make me yell at the screen.

The chief of police is a female Latina, who nobody seems to like very much, although that seems to change as time goes on.  She is vaguely dumb, at first.  It's hard to figure out her character.

Then, take Dexter's girlfriend, please.  When she first appears on the scene, she is still married to a guy who has been in prison off and on for years. They have two kids. She meets Dexter, and suddenly she's so needy, she's hard to watch. She simpers.   "Dexter, I hate to bother you at a crime scene, but I need someone to pick up the kids at school."  And, Dexter wants to please her because she too dumb to figure out what he is up to after hours, (My opinion of her, not his, so much) so he drops everything and does her bidding.  Time. After. Time.  Then, instead of running away as fast as he can, he up and marries her.  And, in the fullness of time, they have a baby.  Then, it's "Dexter, I hate to bother you while you're trying to analyze blood splatter, but the baby won't go to sleep, so will you sing to him?"  And, our hero sings "America the Beautiful" while searching the internet to find his next victim.  Did I mention that he kills bad people? And, gets away with it? And likes doing it?

Dexter's sister is the worst.  She has managed to work  her way up to Detective status, with the aid of her brother's insights.  To say she sleeps around would be a gross understatement.  In addition to her lack of morals, she has the worst potty mouth of any woman I have every seen on any show, and she's proud of  it. She slept with the serial killer that the whole police department was looking for without noticing anything er, strange about him, and even got engaged to him. But, even worse,  she only knows one four-letter word. I was reading about this show one day, and saw that she had said that "F" word 966 time by the time the show aired its Series Finale.  Only one word! Applied to every single situation. How lame is that? Who has that little imagination?

Now, I, myself, don't use very much foul language, although I know some.  I keep it in reserve for extreme situations where nothing else will get my feelings across.  I learned this from my mother. Until I was seventeen years old, I never heard her utter as much as a "darn" or  a "damn."  Then, when I was seventeen, I started getting calls several times a night, with heavy breathing, and threats and dirty language. You know, the usual. I finally told mother about the calls, and she said, "If the phone rings tonight, don't answer it.  I'll get it."  Sure enough, the lowlife called that night, and mother picked up the receiver and let fly with words I didn't even know she knew.  Needless to say, the guy never called back. She knew when to use her store of curse words. I never heard her say any of them again,  But, it certainly gave me an appreciation for the vast vocabulary stored away in her mind, in case she needed it.  And, I have made it a point to emulate her in that way, so watch out.

But, I digress.  The show isn't about the women anyway, it's about sweet old Dexter, who has a taste for murder.  He only wants to kill people who have killed others, and gotten away with it.  He's an avenging angel, so to speak.  He cuts them up, puts them in big black garbage bags and throws them in the ocean, where the gulf stream can take them away to Portugal, or wherever.

I'm only on Season Five, and one of Dexter's bad guys has killed Dexter's wife, just before Dexter catches up with him. Mercifully, she's gone, and so is the bad guy.  The show can't help but be improved by her absence.  There are a few other people in Dexter's life that could meet the same fate, and I wouldn't mourn their passing.

But, wait!  I'm beginning to identify with him!.  That can't be good, can it?

Stay tued.


Olga said...

I never even heard of 'Dexter" but it doesn't sound like my kind of show--killing and cursing. Your review, however, immensely entertaining.

Anonymous said...

"966 times" !" That's got to be an under-estimate.

lucylocket said...

Your post pushed my "rant button."

Television has a way of making women--smart women--appear flighty, harsh, bumbling, etc. Kathy Reichs' character, Brennan, has been turned into a humorless egotistic one-dimensional woman on "Bones." Tess Gerritsen's Rizzoli and Isles are flighty and shallow. I wonder if the authors knew their characters would be changed so much. I wonder if they care. $$$?

After reading one or two Dexter books, I realized that I found him to be witty and charming. I, like you, wondered what it said about me. I tried the series, but I didn't like it much.

L.J. Diva said...

I watched some of S1 and S2 but never really got into it.

As for your mum, good for her. I've had calls like that and really, the only things to do are hang up or let fly with words they're not expecting as they expect you to get all scared and nervous. Show them you're not and they're too shocked to do anything but hang up.

Anonymous said...

We don't get the cable channels either, so I have not watched Dexter. I was told that Breaking Bad was a fantastic series, so I started watching that on Netflix. I can't watch it. It is just too hard to see a guy do that stuff. I don't think I'd like Dexter either.
I am a fan of the British crime shows and have been watching them so much that I've run out of them on Netflix...things like Inspector Lynle, Inspector Morse, and Poirot.

Betty said...

Alwaysinthebackrow: I highly recommend It costs $3 per month and contains a bunch of shows that are on BBC. It's all British all the time, with lots of Mysteries, Comedies, Dramas, etc.

Peruby said...

We have been watching Dexter over here, too. I feel pretty much the same but I kind of feel like I have to stick it out - since there is an end in sight.

I do cringe at some of the crime scenes and other times I get bored and think "come on already".